Sen. Somers: Summer’s arrival puts spotlight on Mystic & CT’s diverse tourist attractions

June 21, 2023

For Immediate Release
June 21, 2023

Sen. Somers: Summer’s arrival puts spotlight
on Mystic and CT’s diverse tourist attractions

With the summer season now in full swing, and Sen. Heather Somers (R-Groton) hopes the season will be a hot one for Mystic and tourist attractions across Connecticut.

“Connecticut tourist attractions have so much to offer in-state families and families from all over the world,” said Somers, who leads the General Assembly’s bipartisan Arts, Culture and Tourism Caucus. “From Mystic to our beaches and from our casinos to our parks and forests, it’s easy to see why tourism spending jumped last year. We want to see that jump this year, too.”

A new study suggests Connecticut saw an 11 percent jump in tourism spending last year by people traveling an hour or more. That pushed tourist spending in Connecticut above the $10 billion threshold for the first time, according to Tourism Economics, a Wayne, Pa.-based firm which produces the study biennially for the Connecticut Office of Tourism.

“Boosting Connecticut’s tourism and hospitality economy is a bipartisan goal,” Somers said.  “We want to bolster tourism-related jobs in this state and grow this vital industry.”

Studies show that for every dollar the state spends on tourism marketing, it gets back $3 in tax revenue. Check out for details.

“Our arts, culture, tourism and hospitality industries create so many direct and indirect jobs and make our beautiful state such a fun place to visit and explore,” Somers added. “Our restaurants, museums, and historical sites are second to none. Our family friendly attractions, like Lake Compounce in Bristol, Quassy in Middlebury, Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport and Ocean Beach Park in New London, are places to create unforgettable experiences.”

Somers, who represents Mystic, said she continues to focus on the feasibility of developing an intermodal transportation center in Mystic. Mystic has earned multiple national awards, with USA Today recently ranking Mystic as one of the top five summer destinations. The digital travel magazine Trips to Discover released a list of “The Best Summer Vacations in Every State,” and Mystic took the crown in the Nutmeg state.

“Parking has long been a challenge in downtown Mystic,” Somers said. “The goal is to find a suitable location, perhaps outside of the downtown area, where we could move people around. Some of the ideas that have been floated are water taxis or trolley systems, so you park once and you get to move around our wonderful location in a different way. We need to keep that discussion going to address that challenge in a holistic way.”